The Stanley Parable Helpful Development Showcase is our way of connecting you to the development of The Stanley Parable by giving you a small look at what's been going on behind the scenes. Each week we'll give you a tiny peek into what it takes to make a game like The Stanley Parable, the creative challenges we come up against in the course of development, and how to not judge yourself as a person for the quality of choices you've made in your own life. These are just a few of the topics we'll cover in this incredibly useful blog series.
This week: Healthy communication between teammates
Being a team leader means prioritizing healthy communication over personal feelings. For example, anyone who's ever led a creative team knows the experience of having to fire someone for animal brutality in the workplace. It's a dirty practice, and together we'll one day eliminate it from the creative environment once and for all.
But the act of having to confront your employees and change their behavior is extremely tricky, no matter what their crime. And navigating these relationships is key to being an effective leader.
Let's look at an example:
Last month I gave a task to William, the level designer on Stanley Parable, and this week I've decided to change the design and now everything he worked on this last month is useless. When conveying this to him, be sure to address the issue in as straightforward and direct a manner as possible.
I've decided to do that by creating a flowchart:
A few weeks later, William gets back to me with a response flowchart, just as I trained him to:
See this is what healthy communication between teammates is supposed to look like.
It's like jazz, an improvisational back-and-forth between creative equals. Each person supporting while also challenging the other. Two supernovas dancing in the sky. Beautiful.
I've composed him another flowchart to help clarify the situation (click for the full sized version):
Another victory for healthy communication.
And here's William's response:
What's the responsible way to handle this situation? Is it to make another flowchart? Almost certainly.
But what kind of leader would I be if I simply gave William another flowchart to explain all of his problems? If he can't discover his own inner flaws without me, how will he every learn? How will he ever learn??
I'm going to go into complete and total radio silence for a few months, essentially conveying to William that I have disappeared off the face of the earth. Perhaps in time he will find the strength within him to make this entire game by himself to my own personal benefit.
Next week: Punishing William for improper treatment of grizzly bears in the workplace.